Category: qemgmfyv

Asensio eyes Real Madrid’s Ronaldo role

first_imgMarco Asensio sees his future at Real Madrid, despite what mounting transfer talk may suggest, with there a desire on his part to follow in the footsteps of Cristiano Ronaldo.The 22-year-old playmaker has taken on a more prominent role at the Santiago Bernabeu, with his ongoing development allowing him to become a key creative influence.He has passed the 100-appearance mark for Madrid this term and is among those the Blancos are looking to for attacking inspiration. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Man Utd ready to spend big on Sancho and Haaland in January Who is Marcus Thuram? Lilian’s son who is top of the Bundesliga with Borussia Monchengladbach Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! Somebody is required to fill the void created by Ronaldo’s summer departure to Juventus, with a new talisman being sought, and Asensio believes he is the man for the job.“Why not, for sure,” the Spain international told Marca.“At the end of the day, of course I want to continue to be successful at Madrid, I want to be important here, I have never hidden from that.“I have been a Madridista since I was young, I always wanted to play for Real Madrid and now that I have the opportunity to be important here I want to take it.”Quizzed on the position he would like to play in order to become Madrid’s on-field leader, Asensio added: “I won’t lie, my favourite is 10 and whenever I’ve been able to I’ve worn that.“Now it’s in the hands of Luka [Modric] who still has many years ahead at Real Madrid but of course I would like to have it in the future.”With Asensio facing competition for his preferred role and Madrid having endured a testing 2018-19 campaign to date, it has been suggested that more sales could be on the cards.Marco AsensioReports have claimed that Asensio may be tempted to follow Ronaldo to Juventus, but he insists there is no substance to the rumours as he has never looked for a move or received any offers.“No, they don’t come to me,” he added.“That’s for my agent. I don’t think about anything other than focusing at Real Madrid. I have made it clear that I want to succeed at Real Madrid and continue here.”While eager to stay put, Asensio could see more top talent drafted into his area of the field during upcoming transfer windows.Talk of a big-money approach for Chelsea star Eden Hazard refuses to go away, with the Belgian considered to fit the ‘Galactico’ mould.“It’s speculation. We will see if anyone comes, but right now it’s just speculation,” Asensio said as he seeks to focus on the present and ignore the incessant rounds of gossip in the Spanish capital.last_img read more

Nokia 8 with 23MP camera, Snapdragon 835 may launch in June: Report

first_imgEarlier in the day, sources close to HMD Global confirmed to India Today Tech that Nokia 3, Nokia 5, Nokia 6 and the re-designed Nokia 3310 would launch in India in June. Now, we hear more rumours about the new Nokia devices. A report notes that the company, along with launching the Nokia 6, Nokia 3 and Nokia 5 globally in June, will also launch high-end Nokia 8 in the same month.The report comes from Pocketnow, a website that covers smartphones. There have been several speculations about the upcoming Nokia 8 that are doing rounds on the web for months. Some reveal the specs of the upcoming Nokia 8 while some seemed to have “revealed” the price.Amidst all the rumours surfacing the web, new rumours have come to the light. New rumours suggest that the upcoming Nokia 8 will come with a 23-megapixel camera. However, the report also mentions “at least” this means there are chances that the smartphone might sport a much higher primary camera than 23-megapixel. The smartphone is also rumoured to feature Carl Zeiss lens.Also Read: Nokia 3310 to have its own limited edition on launchPreviously leaked sketches of the Nokia 8 also seemingly confirmed Carl Zeiss lens onboard. The report also indicates that the Android device will offer a vanilla Android experience. This means that like the recently launched Lenovo’s Moto G5, G5 Plus and LG G6, Nokia 8 will also offer monthly security updates and quick upgrades to new versions of Android and Google’s AI Assistant to the users.The vanilla aka pure Android is something that Nokia is making a feature for all its new phones. Even the Nokia 6, Nokia 5 and Nokia 3 will use pure Android.advertisementThe report further states that the upcoming Nokia 8 will come with Qualcomm’s latest processor – Snapdragon 835. The upcoming HTC flagship to be launched in May 16, dubbed HTC U11, will also come packed with the same processor. This means that both to-be-announced smartphones are somewhat expected to give a tough fight to the recently announced Samsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+ and also Xiaomi Mi 6, which also use Snapdragon 835.Nokia 8 price and screenNokia 8 has already been subjected to several leaks previously. Earlier rumours suggested that the smartphone was expected to come in two variants. Out of which, one will be a cheaper version, while the second one is going to a premium model. According to rumours, the low-end variant of the Nokia 8 is going to sport a 5.2-inch QHD AMOLED display, on the other hand, the top-end model of the Nokia 8 will sport a 5.5-inch display.Also Read: Exclusive: Nokia 3310, Nokia 6, Nokia 3, Nokia 5 coming to India in JuneRumours don’t end just here. Nokia 8 is also expected to come with Google’s Daydream VR platform support. Furthermore, the smartphone will be equipped with either 4GB or 6GB of RAM. This is all about the specs we know so far about the upcoming Nokia phone. On the storage front, the smaller variant of the handset will come with 128GB of internal storage, while the top-end version of Nokia 8 will be equipped with 256GB of internal storage.On the pricing front, the 5.2-inch variant of the Nokia 8 will be priced around 4,000 Yuan (roughly Rs 37,220). On the other hand, the 5.5-inch model will cost 4,500 Yuan (roughly 41,873). The coming of Nokia 8 is just a rumour for now. Although Nokia Mobiles has tweeted that fans should expect more devices. “More announcements coming in 2017” and “We’ve only just begun” are two tweets that the account has made.last_img read more

Virat Kohli loses No. 1 Test ranking after Lord’s debacle

first_imgVirat Kohli lost his number one Test ranking for batsmen to Steve Smith after scoring only 23 and 17 in India’s embarrassing defeat to England at Lord’s in the second Test on Sunday. Kohli had taken the top spot last week after smashing 149 and 51 in the first Test of the five-match series at Edgbaston.Kohli slipped back to the second spot on Monday with 919 points after low scores at Lord’s cost him 15 points.Kohli had become the first Indian batsman to reach the No.1 Test ranking for batsmen since Sachin Tendulkar in 2011.Former Australia skipper Steve Smith, who is currently serving a one-year ban over his role in the ball-tampering scandal, moved back to the top of rankings with 929 points.India lost the Lord’s Test by an innings and 159 runs as India’s batsmen continued their dismal performance away from home. With the loss, India also went 0-2 down in the five-match Test series against England.READ – Virat Kohli after innings defeat at Lord’s: We were outplayed and deserved to loseMeanwhile, James Anderson broke the 900-point barrier for the first time in his career on the back of his match-winning performance at Lord’s.The pacer, who took nine wickets in the second Test against India, gained 19 points to move to 903 rating points. He’s the first bowler to do so after Ian Botham in 1980.READ – India handed humiliating defeat by ruthless England at Lord’sAnderson is currently at the top of ICC Test rankings for bowlers, followed by South Africa’s Kagiso Rabada with 882 points.advertisement Virat Kohli is in second spot with 919 points (@ICC Photo)The loss at Lord’s also brought bad news for other Indian cricketers.READ – Virat Kohli suffers biggest Test defeat as captainMurali Vijay slipped eight places to No.33 after being dismissed for a pair at Lord’s. This, after he managed just 20 and 6 in the first Test at Edgbaston. Dinesh Karthik fell 18 places and is now ranked No.195 after totalling just one run across two innings at Lord’s.Among the bowlers, Kuldeep Yadav fell by 13 places to No.70 after his returns of 1/44 in nine overs at Lord’s.Pleasingly for India, a couple of players made decent gains. Ravichandran Ashwin’s stock as a batsman rose after scores of 29 and 33* – he jumped 10 places to No.57 in the batting charts, and is now the No.3-ranked player among all-rounders after moving up by one place.READ – Downright embarrassing: Indian cricket fans fume after Lord’s disasterHardik Pandya jumped 18 places in the all-rounders’ charts, and is now ranked No.44 – he returned 3/66 and resisted the relentless English attack during knocks of 11 and 26.It also earned him a jump of 25 places among the batsmen, and he is now ranked No.74 in the world.last_img read more



De Gea: It’s a dream to be at Man Utd

first_imgManchester United De Gea: It’s a dream to be at Manchester United Stephen Darwin Last updated 2 years ago 15:25 9/4/17 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) David De Gea Manchester United 2017 Getty Images Manchester United David de Gea Premier League The Spain goalkeeper, who has consistently been linked with a move to Real Madrid, insists he is proud of the high praise that has been coming his way David De Gea insists that it is a dream to be a Manchester United player, despite constantly being linked with a switch to Real Madrid.Despite a difficult start to his United career following his switch from Atletico Madrid back in 2011, De Gea has flourished at Old Trafford and is considered one of the best goalkeepers in world football.Red Devils 9/4 for PL title Article continues below Editors’ Picks Brazil, beware! Messi and Argentina out for revenge after Copa controversy Best player in MLS? Zlatan wasn’t even the best player in LA! ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina He did, however, look all set for a return to Madrid to join Real in 2015, although issues over the completion of paperwork on deadline day scuppered that move and he remained in Manchester.De Gea signed a new deal at Old Trafford soon after that ties him to the club until 2019 and, despite the rumours of a big-money transfer to Zinedine Zidane’s side refusing to go away, he is adamant it remains a dream to play for United.David de Gea Manchester UnitedWhen asked about the widespread praise he has received for his performances, De Gea told MUTV: “Of course, you feel really proud when people think this about you. “It’s really good, but I like to keep my focus, keep working hard and doing my best. To be fair, when you are really young, you don’t think about the future too much, you just want to play with your friends.”When you get older, you start to dream about being there, about being at a top team, so of course it’s a dream to be at a team like Manchester United.”De Gea also discussed how he got into football and, when asked when he knew he was going to be a top goalkeeper, he added: “It’s difficult. I don’t know. I never thought that when I was young.”Maybe when I was 15 or 16 years old, I started feeling better, thinking that I could play at a high level. At the same time, I was also playing tennis and things like that, but I was always better at football. I played some basketball too, but football is what I love.”last_img read more

‘Monster’ Mourinho gives Rashford assurance

first_imgManchester United ‘Monster that kills little kids’ Mourinho hails youngster Rashford as future star Sacha Pisani Last updated 1 year ago 12:06 1/31/18 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(2) Marcus RashfordManchester United Premier League Michael Regan Manchester United Marcus Rashford José Mourinho Premier League Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United The Manchester United boss insisted his young star is still a key player for the side following the signing of Alexis Sanchez Jose Mourinho mocked himself “the monster that kills kids” as he insisted Marcus Rashford remains a crucial member of Manchester United’s side after Alexis Sanchez’s arrival.Mourinho’s attacking riches now include star forward Sanchez after the Chile international swapped Arsenal for Premier League rivals United last week .The signing of Sanchez has raised doubts over Rashford’s game time at Old Trafford , with Romelu Lukaku, Anthony Martial, Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard also vying for starting spots. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Rashford has featured in all 36 of United’s matches this season, the 20-year-old named in the starting XI on 20 occasions.But Mourinho – who has a reputation for not giving youth a chance – reassured Rashford over his role in Manchester.”Marcus’ story is quite interesting because he started playing with Mr [Louis] Van Gaal, when the team was really in trouble, to have options,” said Mourinho.”Then the monster that kills the little kids arrived, but he plays every game since then. He plays every game, starting or coming from the bench, as a striker, as a left winger, as a right winger. Then he goes to the national team.”The kid is having a hell of an experience at every level, so an amazing future waits for him and being surrounded by these players can only help him. But the whole story of Marcus — will he get minutes and matches? — that story is really old, because he’s a very important player for us.”Mourinho added: “In attack, it’s difficult for us to improve. Where are we going to get a better combination of players than we have? We cannot buy Lionel Messi, we cannot buy Cristiano Ronaldo – these are the best players of the last decade.”Where can we get better players than Mata, Martial, Lingard, Rashford, Alexis, Lukaku? In attack, we have an amazing group of players.”Mourinho’s Man United – second and eight points clear of fifth-placed Tottenham – travel to London to face Spurs at Wembley Wednesday.last_img read more

Sudirman Cup 2019: India eye elusive medal, face tough tests in group stage

first_imgSudirman Cup 2019: India eye elusive medal, face tough tests in group stageSudirman Cup badminton: India will take on Malaysia in their opening tie of the mixed team championships on Tuesday before facing a tough test against powerhouses China on Wednesday.advertisement Next Press Trust of India NanningMay 18, 2019UPDATED: May 18, 2019 17:01 IST Sudirman Cup 2019: India will bank on their singles stars PV Sindhu, Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth to deliver (Reuters Photo)HIGHLIGHTSIndia take on Malaysia in their Sudirman Cup opener on TuesdayIndia have been drawn alongside Malaysia and China in Group DIndia have been seeded 8th in the mixed team championshipsIndia will continue their hunt for an elusive medal when top shuttlers PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal spearhead the Indian challenge at the prestigious Sudirman Cup which gets underway Nanning Sunday.India reached the quarterfinals twice in the 2011 and 2017 editions but failed to cross the last eight stage.The Indians would have to ensure they pull no punches when they face heavyweights China and avoid any early hiccups against 2009 semifinalists Malaysia in Group 1D to qualify from the group.India’s chances during the mixed team championship will depend on the quality singles players such as reigning BWF World Tour Finals winner Sindhu, 2019 Indonesia Masters champion Saina Nehwal, 2019 India Open finalist Kidambi Srikanth and BWF World Tour Finals semi-finalist Sameer Verma.India first will look to quell the challenge of Malaysia on Tuesday before taking on the mighty 10-time champions China the following day.India fancy their chances against MalaysiaThe 13-member Indian team, seeded eighth this time, will look to draw inspiration from their sensational win over Malaysia en route to an unprecedented team gold at the Commonwealth Games 2018.With former World No. 1 Lee Chong Wei missing in action this time, India will fancy their chances against Malaysia, who are likely to bank on Lee Zii Jia in the men’s singles.In women’s singles, Goh Jin Wei or Soniia Cheah will lead the charge for Malaysia but they are unlikely to pose any threat to Sindhu or Saina.Malaysia will need their doubles to put up a good performance to salvage hopes of making it to the knockout stage.advertisementSatwiksairaj’s return from injury boosts India’s chances of making the knockoutsBut the return of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy after an injury gap will fuel India’s hopes in both men’s doubles and mixed doubles.Satwik, who recovered from a shoulder injury to make a title-winning comeback at the Brazil International Challenge recently, will form a formidable men’s doubles pair with Chirag Shetty, while pairing with the experienced Ashwini Ponappa in mixed doubles.At the last edition, India had put up a superb performance to upset 1989 winners Indonesia on their way to the quarter-finals where their run was ended by eventual runners-up China.This time too China boosts of formidable team which comprises Olympic champion Chen Long and 2018 All England Champion Shi Yuqi in men’s singles and reigning All England champion Chen Yufei in women’s singles.Besides, China also possess quality doubles combinations and all three Indian pairs will need to punch above their weights to pose a challenge to the formidable neighbours, who are eyeing their 11th title this time.Also See:For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byAkshay Ramesh Tags :Follow Sudirman Cup 2019Follow India badmintonFollow PV SindhuFollow Kidambi SrikanthFollow Saina NehwalFollow Satwiksairaj Rankireddylast_img read more

Report HMM to Start Ordering ULCVs from Next Month

first_imgzoom South Korean shipping major Hyundai Merchant Marine is expected to place orders for up to 20 ultra large container vessels (ULCVs), starting from March, according to local media.The company would commence the ordering spree on the back of South Korea’s plan to support the ordering of up to 50 vessels this year.Namely, the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries is expected to present its five-year plan for the reconstruction of the shipping industry later this month. The Founding Committee for Korea Maritime Promotion Corporation will then start providing financial support.The corporation can issue bonds up to four times its capital, amounting to KRW 3.1 trillion, and manage up to KRW 12 trillion in funds.Hyundai Merchant Marine has delivered a net loss of KRW 479.5 billion in book value of 10 vessels that were sold to Korea Shipping and Maritime Transportation in March 2017.The company’s total revenue increased by 10 percent year-on-year to KRW 5.028 trillion, while its handling volumes surged by 30 percent to 4.03 million TEU from 3.09 million TEU seen in the previous year.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

Province Takes Control of Offshore Resource Agenda

first_imgNova Scotia is taking control of the research and development efforts that will help shape its offshore energy future. The province is investing $6.4 million in research and development, new online delivery models and laboratory equipment to secure better access to scientific information and ultimately generate more wealth and energy from offshore Nova Scotia. “It’s important that we set our own research priorities and it’s important that we make the results of this research public,” Bill Dooks, Minister of Energy, said today, April 27. “We know that our offshore is a frontier, that we have great potential but that research around our geology and tidal power is relatively new. By doing more research, we believe we can build better understanding and attract new companies to do business here.” Two new, non-profit research associations have been established. OETR (Offshore Energy Technical Research) will encourage research into Nova Scotia’s offshore petroleum geology. OEER (Offshore Energy and Environmental Research) will sponsor studies of a variety of environmental matters including the effects of energy exploration on the marine environment. “Nova Scotia competes on a global level to attract exploration dollars,” said Barry Clouter, chair of the Offshore/Onshore Technologies Association of Nova Scotia. “The better these exploration companies understand the region’s geology, the more likely they are to come and spend those dollars here in our province.” Each of the new associations has been given $2.6 million in initial funding from the province, for a total of $5.2 million. Assisting with the promotion of Nova Scotia’s offshore is a $1-million grant to the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, which was announced on Tuesday, April 25. The board maintains a large amount of data related to offshore geology in its data archive, core storage and laboratory facility, known as the core lab. The board says it will use the grant to expand its core lab and upgrade its capacity to manage digital information. About $175,000 will be spent on laboratory equipment at the basin and reservoir laboratory at Dalhousie University, which studies petroleum geology. Mr. Dooks said other jurisdictions, including New Zealand and Australia, are pursuing similar strategies.last_img read more

LG directs authorities to expedite promotions of Delhi govt employees

first_imgNew Delhi: Lt Governor Anil Baijal on Wednesday directed authorities to expedite promotions of Delhi government employees to fill posts and also streamline direct recruitment through a time-bound action plan.Baijal asked Chief Secretary Vijay Kumar Dev to amend the recruitment rules wherever required within a fortnight. Directions were issued as the Lieutenant Governor reviewed the status of vacancies of various cadres. “Reviewed status of vacancies in various cadres of Delhi Government like Health, FSL & Delhi Fire Services. Directed to expedite promotions to fill post & streamline direct recruitment through a time bound action plan,” the Lt Governor tweeted. “Advised CS to amend RRs wherever required within a fortnight (sic),” he said. It comes close on the heels of the LG directing authorities to identify “tainted” officers and “compulsorily retire them”. The move is aimed at weeding out “deadwood” and “dark sheep”, and eliminate corruption and improve functioning of the government.last_img read more

YANKS generation spends weekends at theme parks

first_imgYoung Adults with No Kids (YANKS) in Mumbai and Pune are not all work and often seek holiday or weekend activities such as camping, trekking and visit to theme or amusement park. This was found in a survey which was conducted by an organisation recently. Nearly 70 per cent respondents agreed that visit to a theme park outranked other weekend holiday or leisure activity for them. The next big thing for 55 per cent of the surveyed audience is watching movies as a preferred mode of holiday activity, said the survey which was recently conducted by Adlabs Imagica with Hansa Research that involved 3,600 respondents. Also Read – An income drop can harm brain”Spending on traditional forms of entertainment by YANKS is not the preferred choice. They look forward to more experiential adventures like travel and concerts to enjoy themselves and company of others with incredible spends on entertainment which is a key trigger for theme parks”, owner of an amusement in India, said in a statement. Travelling is no longer restricted to a once a year activity as more and more people are preferring long weekends trips to break the monotony of their regular schedules. Nearly 97 per cent respondents stated that mobile Internet has eased the information search process empowering them while 39 per cent of the YANKS relied entirely on social media, the findings showed.last_img read more

Variety key to succeed in T20 cricket Varun Aaron

first_imgNew Delhi: Rajasthan Royals pacer Varun Aaron feels the gentleman’s game is changing swiftly as batsmen today have many innovations in their kitty to cope with the bowlers. As a result, he feels that the bowlers should also come with new tricks and techniques, a thing he has focussed on in recent times. After being on the bench for most of the first-half, Aaron bowled a magnificent spell against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and played an instrumental role in his side’s three-wicket win. The Jharkhand pacer hogged the limelight after bowling an excellent inswinger to get rid of KKR opener Shubman Gill, who was completely beaten by a brilliant in-swinging knuckle ball. Also Read – We will push hard for Kabaddi”s inclusion in 2024 Olympics: RijijuThe delivery from Aaron took a sharp turn and crashed into the stumps after taking a slight edge from Gill’s bat. Aaron felt the variations in his bowling is a result of his hard work and the better understanding of the game. The 29-year-old admitted that not featuring in the IPL last year helped him improve his bowling variations. “I think not playing IPL previous year really benefitted me. I used to do these (variations) all things before but as I had to play regular cricket, I didn’t get enough time to perfect it to the degree I wanted. Playing county cricket last year and getting lot of time from the mainstream Indian cricket gave me that time and platform to practise and perfect my variations. Also Read – Djokovic to debut against Shapovalov at Shanghai Masters”I really enjoyed my time with Leicestershire. Yes, I am looking to play more county cricket,” he added. Aaron also believed the game of cricket is changing and along with the batsmen, bowlers also need to emerge with innovative ideas. “My bowling has evolved in the last one year. The game is changing rapidly as batsmen are coming with innovative shots and I feel the bowlers also need to step up and should have tricks under their sleeves, a thing which I have worked on since a while and I am glad it is coming out well now,” he revealed. Asked about not being given enough chance in the playing eleven of the Royals, Aaron said: “Yes, I was given a chance after ten games and was really looking to play since the start of the season. I did get a game before but just bowled one over. I was waiting for this chance and had been preparing from a long time.” Speaking on the wicket of Gill, which grabbed everyone’s attention, he said: “I just stuck to the basics and knew the Eden (Garden) wicket was going to suit the way I bowl because there was pace and carry. I bowled a knuckle ball as I knew it would swing with the new ball. I had been bowling it for quite some time. I just feel that it happened at the right time and the wicket also helped.” Aaron however, didn’t looked disappointed after not getting much chance. “I wouldn’t say I was disappointed as in any team the management thinks of certain permutations and combinations to win a game and if they thought of making other guys play, that is fine because at the end of the day it is their call.” “I still feel we have a good chance to qualify and if I can play a major role in making my team win the trophy, missing the first ten matches wouldn’t matter,” he added. The Royals had switched captains mid-way during this season as Ajinkya Rahane had to make way for Steve Smith but Aaron said their below par performance was not because of leadership. “Both Smith and Rahane are really good captains. We didn’t do well in the first half and I don’t think that was because of leadership issue. We lost games by small margins and a captain can’t control that,” he said.last_img read more

Government troops will respect ceasefire in eastern DR Congo UN told

During a meeting on Monday, the UN Mission in DRC, known as MONUC, was informed by Congolese authorities that the country’s armed forces (FARDC) “had been given clear instructions to maintain the ceasefire and not engage any offensive action on the ground,” according to a news release issued in Kinshasa. MONUC said it had noted some progress in the establishment of the separation zones, and called on all parties to conform to the Actes d’engagement signed between the parties in January. The fighting between FARDC and the rebels that form the National Congress for the Defence of the People (CNDP) are in direct violation of the January peace deal and have led to the displacement of thousands of people in the country’s eastern region.The Congolese Government also reiterated its engagement with the Amani Programme set up to implement the peace accord, the process of disengagement and the Nairobi communiqué, the November 2007 agreement under which the DRC and Rwanda have agreed to work together against threats to peace and stability in the region. “The process of disengagement remains the only pacific way to put an end to the conflict,” according to MONUC, which called again on all armed groups for restraint and to ready themselves to move to the regroupment centres.Meanwhile, the new MONUC Force Commander, Lieutenant-General Vincente Diaz de Villegas, completed his first working visit to North Kivu, which has borne the brunt of the recent fighting. While in North Kivu, General Diaz, who took up his post last week, met with UN peacekeepers and the UN coordination team. He was briefed on the security and military situation and was later escorted on a tour of strategic peacekeeping bases. The situation in North Kivu is reported to be relatively calm today, apart from some sporadic gunfire, according to MONUC. 8 October 2008Authorities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has assured the United Nations of its commitment to abide by the ceasefire in the eastern part of the vast African country, which has recently been the scene of some of the worst fighting in over a year between the Government and rebel groups. read more

UN official calls for increased assistance to nations ravaged by conflict and

28 October 2009Humanitarian AidOn the heels of a four-nation trip to see first-hand the damage caused by conflict and natural disasters, the top United Nations humanitarian official today appealed for international support to help these countries recover and rebuild. The conflict in northern Yemen, which he visited earlier this month, remains “pretty neglected” both by the international community and the media, John Holmes, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, told reporters.More than 50,000 people have been uprooted since the fighting between the Government and Al Houthi rebels resumed in earnest in August, bringing the total number of people forced from their homes since the conflict first started in 2004 to 150,000.“There’s no doubt from the humanitarian angle that the situation is getting worse,” Mr. Holmes said.UN requests to both the Government and rebels for a humanitarian pause in fighting to allow urgently-needed supplies to reach civilians have so far been unsuccessful, he noted.Further, the official pointed out that just over 36 per cent of the $24 million flash appeal for Yemen launched last months has been funded so far.Also facing a funding shortfall are the appeals for the Philippines and Indonesia, which he also visited this month.The Philippines was battered by successive storms which affected over 6 million people, killing some 800 people and displacing scores of thousands of others, and caused crop damage estimated at over $160 million.With fears of communicable disease outbreaks high and water levels still high in some areas, Mr. Holmes said that “there is quite a long way to go” in recovery. Only one third of the $74 million appeal has been secured, he told reporters.The $38 million appeal for Indonesia, where a recent 7.9-magnitude earthquake claimed over 1,100 lives and damaged 200,000 homes, is also under-funded, he said.Mr. Holmes, who also serves as the UN’s Emergency Relief Coordinator, urged donors for their support as the long-term rebuilding operation in the South-East Asian nation gets under way.Also in need of increased international assistance is Uganda, which he visited last week and met victims of the notorious rebel group known as the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in the north of the country.“The good news there is that 85 per cent of the 2 million IDPs [internally displaced persons] who had been displaced have been able to go home,” the Under-Secretary-General said.With the LRA – currently wreaking havoc in neighbouring nations – having left northern Uganda, emergency relief efforts are winding down, but support is vital to make sure that basic services and facilities are in place in areas of return, and “there is still a long way to go,” he emphasized. read more

Food prices remain steady during November UN agency reports

FAO’s Food Price Index level was 215 points last month – just two points, or one per cent, above its level in November 2010, according to a news release issued by the Rome-based agency.Cereal prices dropped by 3 points, or 1 per cent, from October. This is due largely to wheat prices, which dropped 3 per cent, while rice prices fell only slightly and coarse grain prices remained virtually unchanged.Also a factor is the “significant upward revision” of the 2011/2012 global cereal supply estimate as a result of better crop prospects in some Asian countries and Russia, and larger than anticipated stocks in the latter.Other factors include deteriorating world economic prospects and a strong United States dollar, according to the latest issue of FAO’s quarterly Crop Prospects and Food Situation report published today.The report confirmed a record level of world cereal production of 2,323 million tonnes for 2011, which should be enough to cover the expected increase in demand in 2011/12 and also allow for a moderate replenishment of world reserves.Global wheat output is expected to increase by 6.5 per cent, while the forecasts for coarse grains and rice were reduced slightly due to a downward adjustment for maize in the US and a deterioration of rice prospects in Indonesia.The report focuses on developments affecting the food situation of developing countries and in particular low-income food-deficit countries (LIFDCs). It said that given their likely increased import requirements, the aggregate cereal import bill of the LIFDCs for 2011/2012 would reach a record level of $33 billion – up 3.4 per cent from 2010/2011.It also pointed out that, despite some improvements in Somalia thanks to substantial humanitarian assistance and favourable rains, food insecurity is expected to remain “critical” in drought-affected areas until the harvest of short-season crops in early 2012. In the Horn of Africa as a whole, food insecurity remained critical for some 18 million people.In several countries of the Sahel, including Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania and Niger, agricultural production has been hit by irregular rains and significant pest infestations, all of which could lead to price rises and food insecurity.The report added that prolonged civil unrest in Syria and Yemen has disrupted trade and humanitarian aid distribution, limiting access to food, especially for vulnerable households.According to FAO’s latest estimates, 33 countries around the world are in need of external assistance as a result of crop failures, conflict or insecurity, natural disasters and high domestic food prices. 8 December 2011Global food prices in November were virtually unchanged from October, and 10 per cent below their peak in February, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reported today. read more

Bank of Canada daily avg for the Cdn dollar 7996 cents US

The average value for the Canadian dollar on Tuesday was 79.96 cents US, up 0.04 of a cent from Monday.The U.S. dollar was at C$1.2507, down 0.05 of a cent.Pound sterling was at C$1.6319, up 0.16 of a cent, and US$1.3048, up 0.18 of a cent.The Euro was at C$1.4592, up 0.27 of a cent.Quotations provided by the Bank of Canada.

JR has said he was forced to sign deal with India

Interestingly, the then President opened up to Mr. Galbraith and said he would hold elections in the Tamil-populated northern and eastern provinces in Sri Lanka. Polls were finally held in November 1988.Mr. Galbraith also provides an insight into the relations between the IPKF and the Sri Lankan Army (SLA), and the ground situation in the Jaffna peninsula after being flown to the area during his visit.“…the IPKF and the Sri Lankan forces are getting on well together, and…the situation in Jaffna, while still far from normal, is gradually improving,” the American diplomat said in an assessment. (Colombo Gazette) Sri Lanka was forced into making a deal with India as its own armed forces had twice refused to “take Jaffna”, then President J.R. Jayewardene has been quoted as saying in a declassified document, nearly 30 years after the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) was deployed in the island nation, The Hindu newspaper reported.Jayewardene told visiting American diplomat Peter Galbraith that he had twice ordered his troops to take Jaffna — “burn the place to the ground” — and they had talked him out of it on grounds of unacceptably high casualties. A little over 1,200 Indian soldiers died in IPKF operations against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in northern and eastern Sri Lanka between 1987 and 1990. In May 1991, former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, who had signed the July 1987 peace deal with Jayewardene, was assassinated by the LTTE. “He [Mr. Jayewardene] made clear that he shared the GOI’S [Government of India’s] implacable hostility toward Prabakaran, calling the LTTE leader ‘a mad fellow’, ” a declassified CIA document said about the February 1988 conversation.“He stressed, though without obvious bitterness, that none of his outside friends would help him, so he had no choice but to make a deal with India,” the CIA document read. In response to significant promises of devolution of powers to the Tamil minority and recognition of Tamil as an official language, India agreed to provide military assistance — the IPKF — to ensure peace according to the 1987 Gandhi-Jayewardene accord. read more

Annan recommends extending UNs IsraelSyria disengagement force

In a report report to the Security Council released today at UN Headquarters in New York, Mr. Annan states that while the situation in the Israeli-Syrian sector has been generally quiet, the continued presence of the UN Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) – first deployed in 1974 – remains essential. He notes that both Syria and Israel have agreed to the proposed extension, which would carry the Force through 30 November. Commenting on the general need to resolve the current Middle East crisis, the Secretary-General writes, “I hope that determined efforts will be made by all concerned to tackle the problem in all its aspects, with a view to arriving at a just and durable peace settlement, as called for by the Security Council in its resolution 338 (1973).”That text called for peace talks and reaffirmed an earlier milestone Council resolution – 242 of 1967 – which requires the withdrawal of Israeli forces from all occupied territories and an end to all claims of belligerency, as well as an acknowledgement of the right of all States in the region to live in peace. Together, resolutions 242 and 338 are considered the basis for an overall settlement in the Middle East. In recommending the UNDOF extension, the Secretary-General draws attention to the current funding shortfall faced by the Force, which was owed $15.7 million in unpaid dues as of the end of April.The Security Council is expected to discuss the proposed extension before the expiration of UNDOF’s current mandate on 30 May. read more

Students promote Right to Play

Abbi Hill, left, and Kyler Nurmsoo promote Right to Play Brock University in the Walker Complex this week.A campus group is raising money and awareness this week for an organization that uses sport and play as a tool for development in impoverished countries.The Brock chapter of Right to Play has displays in Walker Complex and MacKenzie Chown A block, where members are selling T-shirts, collecting change and distributing information about the humanitarian cause.The effort commemorates Right to Play Week, which spreads the word about the movement and the 30-member group at Brock, said Kyler Nurmsoo, president and third-year Sport Management student.Each week, more than 688,000 children take part in regular sport and play activities organized by Right to Play.“It’s a way to let them be kids for a day,” said Nurmsoo, whose own involvement was inspired by Professor Laura Cousens’ Sport for Development course.Right to Play has been present on campus for a while, he said. But it didn’t become an official group until the end of September.Now “we’re spreading awareness on the Brock campus and looking to move into the community,” he said. read more

Football Ohio State assistant coach Zach Smith arrested for criminal trespassing

Ohio State wide receivers coach Zach Smith talks to junior wide receiver Eric Glover-Williams prior to fall camp on Aug. 5. Credit: Colin Hass-Hill | Sports Editor.Ohio State wide receivers coach Zach Smith will appear in court on Wednesday after he was arrested on May 12 for criminal trespassing, according to a Delaware County Municipal Court record. A spokesman for the Ohio State football team confirmed the information, but provided no additional comment on Smith’s arrest. Smith pleaded not guilty to the original charges. Smith is in his seventh season as the wide receivers coach at Ohio State and is also the recruiting coordinator. Smith spent five years at Florida under Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer as a graduate assistant and a quality control assistant. Smith is the grandson of former Ohio State head coach Earle Bruce. read more